Tag: women in science

Ada Lovelace: Math, Vision, and Ambition in a Woman Meets Certain Death in Victorian England

When I think of Ada Lovelace 1815-1852, widely recognized as the first computer programmer, I think of a woman with highly curious intellect, vision, superb math skills, and ambition with absolutely no where to apply them in Victorian England. She chose to find men who had position and power and apply her gifts through them, as that was one of  the only ways a woman could push her own agenda in that time, but the men she chose failed or betrayed her and she was left with nothing. I cannot begin to imagine this woman’s frustration. It boils my...

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Marie Curie: The Quest to Know, Polish/French (1867-1934)

“Be less curious about people and more curious about ideas.” ~Marie Curie Marie Curie discovered radioactivity. This is a simplified and reductionist sentence but still, you should have that association in your mind with this woman because her work is that important. Though many focus on the love affair between her and her husband and sometimes, the more illicit love affair with a married man later in life as a widow, the real love affair was between her and the elements she isolated—polonium and radium—and the mysterious glowing substances they produced. I think probably what she was really in...

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Carol Ruckdeschel: “Tireless defender of sea turtles” (American b. 1941)

I happened to catch a January 13, 2021 For the Wild podcast titled Carol Ruckdeschel on Keeping Cumberland Island Wild. In this interview, Ruckdeschel describes the ongoing fragmentation of the wilderness protections she and others have fought so hard to establish over the years to protect Georgia’s most biologically diverse barrier islands. But the biggest risk for these islands and their inhabitants is the looming development of Spaceport Camden, a proposed rocket launch site in Camden County, Georgia. I urge you to listen to the podcast and scroll to the bottom of this For the Wild page to the Take Action section...

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Katalin Karikó: The biochemist who persisted!

I happened to stumble onto the story of this incredible woman whose resilience and persistence have yielded such a relevant contribution to science and medicine, one that we all will benefit from, now and in the future. We need to learn from her story. Yes, she is extraordinary, but what she endured is unacceptable. We can and must do better. “Usually, at that point, people just say goodbye and leave because it’s so horrible,” said Katalin Karikó(FRANCE 24). What if she had thrown her arms up in the air and walked away? And what about those who do just say...

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Matilda Joslyn Gage: In Her Name, American (1826-1898)

A few weeks back, I came upon a term I had not heard before, the ‘Matilda Effect’. It’s defined as: a bias against acknowledging the achievements of those women scientists whose work is attributed to their male colleagues (Wikipedia). This term was coined by science historian Margaret W. Rossiter in 1993, in her essay The Matthew Matilda Effect in Science. The Matthew Effect, labeled in 1948 and credited to Robert K Merton, and later to Harriet Zuckerman as well, refers to the way that: eminent scientists will often get more credit than a comparatively unknown researcher, even if their...

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